Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deacon Keith Fournier

6/5/2009 (5 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The Catholic Church will not change its position on the nature of marriage because it cannot. Truth is not up for grabs.

The reason that marriage and the family founded upon it has become the foundation of civil societies across ethnic, geographical, religious and racial communities is because it is an institution revealed by the Natural Law. It is not some social construct which can be discarded, redefined or ever replaced.

The reason that marriage and the family founded upon it has become the foundation of civil societies across ethnic, geographical, religious and racial communities is because it is an institution revealed by the Natural Law. It is not some social construct which can be discarded, redefined or ever replaced.

Highlights

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/5/2009 (5 years ago)

Published in Politics & Policy


CHESAPEAKE, Va. (Catholic Online) - The news is filled with efforts through legislation or the use of the courts to undermine marriage by expanding its definition to somehow include homosexual partnerships. Anyone who questions whether such efforts serve the common good are increasingly dismissed as "homophobic" and intolerant.

However, namecalling will not change our position on this matter nor will it make us go away. At the forefront of the movement to protect marriage are Catholics who believe what the Church teaches. Our insisting that marriage remain what it has always been is adding to our precarious place in the culture these days. However, make no mistake; the Catholic Church will not change its position on the nature of marriage because it cannot. Truth is not up for grabs, no matter what the growing "dictatorship of relativism" throws our way.

Among the clearest summaries of the teaching of our Church on this matter was set forth by then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI) in the "Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons" promulgated in 1986. Here are just a few of the clearly stated insights: "The Church, obedient to the Lord who founded her and gave to her the sacramental life, celebrates the divine plan of the loving and live-giving union of men and women in the sacrament of marriage. It is only in the marital relationship that the use of the sexual faculty can be morally good. A person engaging in homosexual behavior therefore acts immorally."

"To choose someone of the same sex for one's sexual activity is to annul the rich symbolism and meaning, not to mention the goals, of the Creator's sexual design. Homosexual activity is not a complementary union, able to transmit life; and so it thwarts the call to a life of that form of self-giving which the Gospel says is the essence of Christian living. This does not mean that homosexual persons are not often generous and giving of themselves; but when they engage in homosexual activity they confirm within themselves a disordered sexual inclination which is essentially self-indulgent".

"As in every moral disorder, homosexual activity prevents one's own fulfillment and happiness by acting contrary to the creative wisdom of God. The Church, in rejecting erroneous opinions regarding homosexuality, does not limit but rather defends personal freedom and dignity realistically and authentically understood."

What is clear upon reading this letter, the Sacred Scripture, the Catholic Catechism and the clear, unbroken teaching of the Church is that Catholics who are faithful cannot and will not accept the effort to undermine authentic marriage. Thus, those who follow the teaching of the Church may be on a collision course with the current approach to this matter being embraced by the US Administration.

President Barack Obama has declared June "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month" and issued a Presidential proclamation which all but elevates practicing homosexuals to being given a suspect class classification under Civil Rights law. Among the Presidents comments he noted: "The LGBT rights movement has achieved great progress, but there is more work to be done. LGBT youth should feel safe to learn without the fear of harassment, and LGBT families and seniors should be allowed to live their lives with dignity and respect. My Administration has partnered with the LGBT community to advance a wide range of initiatives. At the international level, I have joined efforts at the United Nations to decriminalize homosexuality around the world. Here at home, I continue to support measures to bring the full spectrum of equal rights to LGBT Americans." His appointments of openly activist homosexual leaders to significant positions in his administration only further signals where this administration may be headed.

This does not change the truth. Homosexual sexual acts, even if engaged in with one partner for a long time, can never be the equivalent of a marriage, no matter what any court or legislature says. The reason that marriage and the family founded upon it has become the foundation of civil societies across ethnic, geographical, religious and racial communities is because it is an institution revealed by the Natural Law. It is not some social construct which can be discarded, redefined or ever replaced. Efforts of some within the homosexual movement to equate how one engages in non-marital sexual acts with a member of the same sex with being a member of a particular race, or gender and thereby a "protected class" for civil rights purposes is legally and socially dangerous. One is a status; the other involves behavior, a chosen behavior and a lifestyle.

Some maintain that same sex attraction is a genetic predisposition. This is disputed. Even if it were the case, that does not give homosexual activity any more of a claim to being given a special civil rights status. Should we really give disordered appetites civil rights status under the law? Let's consider an absurd example. I have struggled most of my life with fighting obesity. I am on the "winning end" lately, but just give me another Holiday! A very good argument can be made that obesity also has a genetic predisposition. However, I will fight it my whole life because it is unhealthy. It is a disordered appetite. Should we as a Nation decide that fat people have a civil right to be fat? Should those who insist that they resist that "genetic predisposition" to overeat be called Fata-phobic?

Disordered appetites - and the actions engaged in by those who give into them - simply should not be called civil rights. Certainly, those who succumb to them should be treated with the human dignity that they deserve and not be discriminated against. However, that is because they are human not because of their behavior! Homosexual sexual acts are simply homosexual sexual acts. Our bodies do not lie, they speak the language written within their constitution and confirmed in the Natural Law which binds us all.

Marriage between a man and a woman, intended for life, open to children, and the family founded upon it, is not up for grabs. Nor is it an antiquated institution. It is the first society, first government, first school, first economy and first church. Strong marriages and the families founded upon them pave the path to the future. Continuing efforts to use the Police Power of the State to give the same legal status as a marriage to homosexual paramours and force the entire society to recognize their relationships as equivalent to a marriage do not serve the common good.

I made similar comments in a past article. In response, one homosexual activist responded, "Deacon Keith Fournier you are an under-evolved societal retard. But don't worry. Progressive thinking will sweep you, and all those like you, away." It is interesting that he did not engage the claims I made or my positions. Rather, he resorted to personal attacks. I do not share his assessment of my place on his evolutionary cycle. I find his use of derogatory language used to insult our neighbors who are learning disabled to be offensive. But most importantly I absolutely reject the claim that people who want to eliminate true marriage by attempting to change its definition are the "progressives' of the current age.

Homosexual activists who oppose marriage - and that is precisely what the so called "Marriage Equality" or "Freedom to Marry" movement actually does - are the ones who want to turn the clock back and impede progress. They are "Regressives" not "Progressives." The foundation for the real progress made in Western civilization is partly because of the special recognition and place given to the first society of the family. That family is founded upon authentic marriage between one man and one woman. It is the first mediating institution of civil society. Marriage and family ground our organizing vision of the broader society and informs our philosophy of governance, including the proper place of the principle of subsidiarity, deferring to the family first.

Marriage has been given this privileged and protected legal and social status for a good reason, it serves the common good. It is the primary civilizing institution, constituted for the bearing and caring of children in an environment wherein they can best be nurtured, loved, socialized, schooled in the virtues and prepared for life in broader communities. Marriage has long been accepted as having been revealed in the Natural Law. Yes, religious traditions, including my own, build upon that Natural Law through revelation. However, the effort to call the Catholic insistence upon protecting marriage as between a man and a woman a "religious" position in order to marginalize and dismiss the argument is at best disingenuous and at worst anti-religious bigotry.

Should Disordered Appetites be Civil Rights? The answer is a resounding "No!"

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2015
Universal:
That, rejecting the culture of indifference, we may care for our neighbours who suffer, especially the sick and the poor.
Evangelization: That Mary's intercession may help Christians in secularized cultures be ready to proclaim Jesus.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Politics & Policy

Thirteen cases that will dramatically change the American way of life stand before Supreme Court Watch

Image of Heading into the final month of its annual term, the Supreme Court will need to render decisions on 13 very important cases that will dramatically affect the American way of life.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Heading into the final month of its annual term, the Supreme Court will need to render decisions on 13 very important cases that will dramatically affect the American way of life. The high court will decide whether same-sex couples have a right to marry ... continue reading


Mysterious company without assets plays role in Clinton's fortunes Watch

Image of In the meantime, the identities of several U.S. and foreign-based companies that Bill Clinton worked for have been disclosed in Hillary Clinton's recent financial report.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A mysterious company called WJC, LLC without assets or employees has been discovered in the financial files of Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton. The former president has legally used the company to provide consulting and other services. This fact demonstrates ... continue reading


Obama's use of social media points to cozy relationship between White House, Silicon Valley Watch

Image of Recognized as the first American president of the social media age, Obama has already established a standard for how politicians connect with a digitally savvy electorate.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Barack Obama was swept to victory in an age of tweets, Facebook, texting and social media. While this has gotten the vote out to younger members of the electorate, there are concerns that the instant gratification of the electronic age is trivializing ... continue reading


President Obama's domestic policies under heavy legal scrutiny Watch

Image of Many of President Obama's social policies may not stand up to scrutiny in a court of law.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

United States President, Barack Obama will be leaving office in January of 2017. When we consider his legacy he leaves to the nation, we must take into account that many of his domestic policies - such as those on same-sex marriage, Obamacare and immigration ... continue reading


Obama radically reformed an important American system -- and you didn't even realize it! Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

While President Obama's constantly "reforms" areas of our legislation and laws, the traditional patent law has taken a hit. Although most Americans know very little and don't care very much about patent laws, the effect these changes will have on innovative America can ... continue reading


Democrats break ranks with Obama over secret trade bill Watch

Image of Senator Elizabeth, the Senior Democratic Senator from Massachusetts, is leading a bill which would force President Obama to be transparent in regards to his secret trade bill which only Congressional members may review.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Obama's secretive trade bill is coming under fire from some unlikely sources, namely Democratic Senators Joe Manchin (WV) and Elizabeth Warren (MA), who are both leading the charge for immediate consideration of a bill that would require the contents of ... continue reading


ISIS, IRAN, OBAMACARE: President Obama's legacy - very slim indeed! Watch

Image of A very nonplussed looking president, indeed.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

United States President Barack Obama will be out of office shortly. How will historians judge him? Not too well, according to New York Post columnist John Podhoretz. "After the failure of the Arab Spring, the collapse of Libya, the failure to act on his ... continue reading


CREDIT WHERE IT'S DUE? Hillary Clinton had 'Leadership, Ownership, Stewardship' of Libyan policy 'from start to finish' Watch

Image of State Department Director of Policy and Planning Jake Sullivan and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama at the U.S.-ASEAN meeting in Cambodia on Nov. 20, 2012.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

According to one of her top aides, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had "leadership/ownership/stewardship of this country's Libya policy from start to finish." That claim came in an email written by one of Clinton's top aides. The message was forwarded ... continue reading


All for naught? FBI admits that Patriot Act didn't lead to cracking major terrorist cases Watch

Image of Opponents, with the inspector general conclude that no major cases have been broken by use of the Patriot Act's records-snooping provisions.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It granted the Federal Bureau of Investigation bold new powers - but now the FBI admits that the Patriot Act didn't help them crack any major terrorism cases. The Justice Department's Inspector general Michael E. Horowitz now says there are issues that keep key ... continue reading


Karl Rove's American Crossroads no longer as powerful as it once was Watch

Image of American Crossroads began by Karl Rove and other powerful Republicans were at one time a most powerful force in American politics.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

American Crossroads, created by Karl Rove and other powerful Republicans, was at one time a most powerful force in American politics. There is evidence, however, that this is changing. The American political landscape is changing, and the group is seeing the ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Sirach 42:15-25
15 Next, I shall remind you of the works of the Lord, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 33:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9
2 Give thanks to Yahweh on the lyre, play for him on ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 10:46-52
46 They reached Jericho; and as he left Jericho with ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 28th, 2015 Image

Bl. Margaret Pole
May 28: Martyr of England. She was born Margaret Plantagenet, the niece ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter